(L-R): A visitor at the annual Southern Farm Show speaks with Rick Cuozzi and Billy Wall of Company Wrench. Every year, contractors enjoy the opportunity to see a variety of construction equipment at the show.
It started years ago, when one of the major tractor lines brought along some construction equipment to exhibit at the annual Southern Farm Show in Raleigh, N.C. Show manager David Zimmerman recalls meeting the construction representative who told him, "All my best clients are here. I thought this was a farm show!"
That year, Zimmerman discovered two things — first, that many farmers perform grading, excavating and land-clearing work as their main or side job; and second, that many construction professionals grew up on a farm, and while they are now in construction, they still have land, or they just like to visit the show to keep up with agriculture.
Since those initial discoveries and the early introduction of construction equipment at the show, several additional factors have strengthened its presence there: Farms are getting larger, major farm operations are employing more construction equipment, and forestry, which ties into the construction equipment business as much or more than agricultural equipment, has seen major growth at the show in recent years.
As a result, the Southern Farm Show has the largest annual display of construction equipment to be found in the Carolinas and Virginia. And with more than 400 exhibitors covering most of the North Carolina State Fairgrounds, it's also the largest trade show of any type in the three states.
All the major agricultural lines at this year's Southern Farm Show will also feature their construction equipment.
Those companies include New Holland, John Deere, Case and Kubota, which will be joined by a cast of construction equipment manufacturers and dealers, including Company Wrench, which represents JCB and Fecon; Ditch Witch of North Carolina; Gregory Poole Equipment Company, which handles Caterpillar; Rob's Hydraulics, which handles Hyundai, Manitou, Yanmar, and Husky; Sound Heavy Machinery, representing ASV and Kobelco; and CCS Equipment Sales, which handles Takeuchi rubber track loaders and mini-excavators, Gehl skid steer loaders, RAMMAX trench rollers, Kawasaki wheel loaders, avant mini-loaders, Vibrotech screening machines, Dresser dozers and LiuGong Excavators.
Forestry equipment companies on hand will include FAE, Fecon, Loftness and Seppi, and there also will be plenty of construction attachments to be discovered at the show, with companies including Construction Implements Depot, Loflin Fabrication, Rut Manufacturing and Tractor Tracs.
The 2019 Southern Farm Show will be held Jan. 30 to Feb. 1 at the North Carolina State Fairgrounds, Raleigh.